As baseball season kicks off, food distributors experience more demands

Baseball season recently kicked off, and while it signals the start of a relaxing summer for fans, it may be a much busier time for distributors responsible for transporting food to ballparks. Whether they're responsible for delivering food to many major and minor league parks within a small area or just a few stadiums spread over a significant region, they'll need to optimize schedules with route planning software to ensure operations run smoothly all season and guarantee all fields are stocked for each game.

Ballparks need to stock up as the season starts
Now is the time of year when baseball fans are eager for hot dogs, beer and other classic snacks, and it's imperative parks have enough food to satisfy hungry visitors. According to the National Hot Dog and Sausage Council, baseball fans will enjoy more than 20 million hot dogs during the 2013 season. The top city for sales will be Los Angeles, where Dodgers fans will eat nearly 2.5 million hot dogs this year.

However, concession stands will need to stock up on a lot more than just hot dogs. Condiments, buns, beverages, pretzels, peanuts and ice cream will all be in strong demand as stadiums continue to diversify their menus to attract additional customers. In order to do so, some parks have come up with unusual options to lure in fans, with the Walking Taco and Comiskey Burger among the new additions at the Chicago White Sox's U.S. Cellular Field, according to MLB.com.

Need for paper, plastic products also strong
Food and beverage deliveries are a major concern for stadiums nationwide, but those aren't the only supplies they need to stock up on. Concession stands need to have plates, napkins, utensils, cups and straws readily available for customers. Additionally, workers also need access to gloves, soap and paper towels for sanitation purposes.

Baseball season puts additional demand on the companies responsible for supplying parks with such goods, and they may need to reallocate resources or optimize processes in order to keep up. By using vehicle routing software, organizations can ensure they are effectively utilizing all trucks and planning routes that make use of the least amount of time and fuel possible. This will ensure deliveries and pickups are completed on time and ballparks are well-stocked and prepared for both visitors and employees.